Not content with a blatant copy of the iPad mini and a smartphone called the Mi Phone, Xiaomi’s latest Android overlay – MIUI 6 – bears more than a passing resemblance to iOS 7. The flat icons, the icon screens scrolling above the fixed app tray at the bottom, the calendar, calculator, compass …
Xiaomi global VP and former Google exec Hugo Barra has said previously that suggestions that the company copies Apple’s designs are “sweeping sensationalist statements” and that similarities are coincidental.
“If you have two similarly skilled designers, it makes sense that they would reach the same conclusion,” he argues. “It doesn’t matter if somebody else has reached the same conclusion.”
Seems Xiaomi’s software designers, like their tablet designers, reached very similar conclusions here.
Design protection is very limited in China, making it tough for Apple to take legal action, and it’s also possible that Apple doesn’t want to rock the boat in a sensitive market. How long Apple’s tolerance will last, however, as Xiaomi expands internationally is something that will be interesting to see.